Australian Open news: Can Craig Tiley survive amid Novak Djokovic crisis

Tennis Australia CEO Craig Tiley with the Australian Open trophies

Australian Open chief Craig Tiley is coming under increasing pressure, after Novak Djokovic saw his visa to remain in Melbourne revoked for a second time on Friday. 

Court papers presented by Djokovic’s legal team appeared to confirmed Tennis Australia have helped to get their defending champion into the country, despite his refusal to follow the guidelines to be vaccinated.

That stance has caused a major international storm that is arguably one of the biggest stories ever to hit tennis, with Tennis Australian chief Tiley now in the spotlight for his role in the fiasco.

Tiley had been widely praised for his organisation of the Australian Open prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, but he came under fire last year as players were forced to isolate to meet quarantine rules and now he has been caught up in the Djokovic scandal.

Tennis365 spoke exclusively to former world No.1 Justine Henin about the Djokovic story in her role as a Eurosport analyst and she told us that questions need to be asked on so many levels of this story.

“It is tough for Djokovic what he is going through, but life has been tough also for Australian people over the last two years,” Henin told us. “It has been so complicated, so many elements in this story.

“For Novak, if he feels this is unfair, he has to fight. But I hope in a few days we can speak about tennis and have some great matches.

“For him, it must be a nightmare and we don’t know what happens, but for sure Novak and no player can be over the rules. He tried something, but where are the limits and have they been touched? It is hard to say.”

Tiley has remained silent throughout the Djokovic visa storm, but the time is coming for him to give answers to a story that he has been a part of from the start.

With the Australian government stating repeatedly that Tiley and his Australian Open chiefs were told previous Covid infection was not enough for any player to have a medical exception against a Covid vaccine, that advice appears to have been ignored.

Tiley needs to present his side of this story before a judgement is reached, but right now, he does not look to hold a very strong hand in this game of political poker.